Is there any room for yet another pop punk band, especially a British one with a definite American feel to them? Well when they sound as good as You Had Me At Hello the answer is a resounding yes. With their debut EP Take It Off the quartet from Keighley, West Yorkshire more than prove their status as one of the best emerging punk rock bands in the UK.
Take It Off is a feisty little collection of songs with a passion and energy to make it catchy and undeniably consistent on the attention and ear. Yes maybe one would have liked a little more originality to the release to set it and the band apart from a multitude of new power pop punk bands but there is an essence and promise to the music suggesting that will come and soon.
Formed the end of 2009 You Had Me At Hello consisting of vocalist Dan Hyde, guitarist Adam Doveston, bassist Jason Doveston, and Alex Riley on drums, took no time in finding themselves sharing stages with the likes of Army Of Freshman (who also produced the EP), Lethal Bizzle, Utah Saints , and Young Knives. February of last year saw the band over in Ventura California to record Take It Off as well as lighting up venues such as the O2 Academies in Newcastle and Leeds back home. With now a tour of Texas under their belt as well the EP marks the next step in their step onto the wider stage of music something the release suggests is a formality success wise.
The release hits the mark from the off with the contagious opener Diamonds & Pearls, the track bustling in with purpose and eager energy to rile up the senses. Enthused riffs and striking melodic enterprise alongside the immediately appealing hook of the song ensures nothing but warm satisfaction. With a video in the works to go with the song it is an obvious and infectious doorway into the band and their sounds though you can say that about a few of the songs on the EP.
The following Breathless continues the irrepressible drive of band and music, the melodies and harmonies stirring up a dust of pleasure at every twist and turn. The bass of Jason is a dark energy behind the song to add a depth whilst the vocals of Dan soar with a strength and smooth quality ably backed by the rest of the band. The track does not offer anything ground breaking though it is hard to remember many songs from similar fuelled bands that has left as good an impression.
The tracks Pull That Trigger, Say It Ain’t Much, and Kill The Catch do more than a fine job in satisfying the ear with their varying degrees of infectiousness especially the third of the trio with its more than keen Green Day like breath but it is the closing Carry On Regardless which pulls the release back to the heights of the opening duo of songs. Spined by an irresistible winding groove the song wraps its melodic arms around the ear with excitable emotion whilst the rhythms of Alex have their finest hour on the release, his play a hypnotic and bustling treat.
Take It Off is an great debut to mark the band as one to keep a keen eye upon. With an extra infusion of distinction to their sound it is hard to imagine anything less than growing success and status for You Had Me At Hello.